California Gambling Control Commission and Division of Gambling Control Promote "California Problem Gambling Awareness Week"

Monday, March 6, 2006
Contact: (415) 703-5837, agpressoffice@doj.ca.gov

(SACRAMENTO) – The State Gaming Agency -- the California Gambling Control Commission and the Attorney General’s Division of Gambling Control are working together to promote “California Problem Gambling Awareness Week” March 6 – 12 to educate the public about the warning signs of problem gambling and identify resources for those in need. As part of the State’s collaborative efforts, the State Gaming Agency has participated in a coalition consisting of the California Department of Alcohol and Drug Program’s Office of Problem Gambling (OPG), the California Horse Racing Board, the California State Lottery, the Department of Mental Health and the California Council on Problem Gambling.
Gambling in California provides revenue for our State and local governments, jobs for communities, and entertainment for responsible patrons. However, an estimated two to five percent of the general population experiences significant difficulties as a result of gambling, including financial, physical and mental health problems.

In recognition of Problem Gambling Awareness Week, the morning session of the Commission’s March 9th meeting is devoted to problem gambling. Commission staff will present an overview of California’s efforts to address problem gambling. As part of this effort, representatives from the Division of Gambling Control and OPG will discuss their individual and coordinated efforts related to problem gambling. Commission staff will also present draft regulations to address problem gambling in California cardrooms. These draft regulations were developed with input from the Division of Gambling Control, OPG, the California Council on Problem Gambling, representatives of the Cardroom industry, and the Commission’s Gaming Policy Advisory Committee.

The State Gaming Agency has also participated in OPG’s “Problem Gambling Advisory Group”, consisting of a variety of State and local government agencies and organizations, tribal organizations, cardroom organizations, researchers and academicians. The purpose of this advisory group is to provide input to OPG related to a statewide plan for a problem gambling prevention program.

Individuals seeking help about problem gambling may phone 1-800-GAMBLER. Additional information is also available at the following websites:

• Office of Problem Gambling at: www.problemgambling.ca.gov
• California Gambling Control Commission: http://www.cgcc.ca.gov/playresponsibly1.html
• Division of Gambling Control: http://www.ag.ca.gov/gambling/responsible.htm
• California State Lottery: http://www.calottery.com/playresponsibly
• Office of Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger: Governor Schwarzenegger Proclaims March 6 – 12 “California Problem Gambling Awareness Week” - http://www.governor.ca.gov
• California Council on Problem Gambling: http://www.calproblemgambling.org/

# # #